a french garden


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Apricots harvested

All the apricots have been recovered from the trees, well actually tree, the one in the front garden gave virtually no fruit.  The one in the back garden gave us only about 5 or 6 kilos.  This year there was no problem with what to do with them.  A split with our neighbour Annie giving us each a nice bowl to eat.

Apricot blossom

I took this photograph on the 20th. of March and the tree was covered with blossom.  There was no shortage of bees in the garden although they were more attracted to the willow and plum which were also flowering.  The apricot flowers early and yet is sensitive to the cold.  A cold spring and late frosts can leave you with no fruit.  I cannot recall a particularly cold period after the apricot flowered this year but the year has veered from high to low temperatures in rapid succession which probably was enough to disturb the fruiting.

Prunus armeniaca ‘Rouge du Roussillon’

The variety we grow is Rouge du Roussillon which gives large sweet fruits which are very good to eat raw and also excellent to make into jam and compote and tarts in the years when the harvest is plentiful.  It is also a very decorative tree in its own right with the beautiful blossom in the spring and in the autumn the leaves turn beautiful shades of golden yellow and red.

Apricots in hiding

There are always more than you expect hiding away behind the leaves.  Last year we were taken by surprise by the quantity that we were able to take off the two trees.  We were able to collect several orange boxes of fruit to share with friends who like us had plenty to eat and also to make into jam.

The apricots are the first fruits we have from the trees and in some ways I am secretly glad I do not have to worry about making jam or preserving them in some way.  The jam etc. will come soon enough, the plums are on the way!